|Attention! Spoiler ahead!|
This article contains plot information that may spoil major story aspects for the reader. Read at your own risk!
The Ark, also referred to as the Yamantau Bunker, is a location in Metro Exodus. It is a massive underground bunker located under Mount Yamantau in the Urals. It serves as the main setting of the Yamantau chapter.
The Ark was originally intended as a shelter for the Russian government in the event of a nuclear attack. The bunker was still under construction when the bombs fell. Despite being a classified location, the enemy forces were apparently aware of it, as Yamantau was even more heavily bombed than Moscow, with the area remaining irradiated. Despite this, the bunker remained intact, though its communication antennas were damaged. The government never arrived, and the two thousand or so survivors in the bunker were mostly construction workers, with some communication officers, and a doctor. Due to the bunker still being under construction, however, the food reserves were nowhere near what had been projected. The survivors were soon forced to resort to cannibalism. They eventually managed to fix the antennas. While some wanted to contact other survivors in good faith and trade food in exchange for shelter, it was ultimately decided that the communication system would be used for a more sinister purpose; luring survivors to the bunker and then eating them. The area in front of the bunker came to be littered with the vehicles of people who fell for the broadcast and entered the bunker, never to return.
Role in Metro Exodus
- Main article: Yamantau (Metro Exodus Level)
After fleeing Moscow following Anna and Artyom's discovery of the Hanza radio jammers and subsequent destruction of the Hanza Cruiser train, Artyom found a looping broadcast from the Ark. Miller decided to head for the Ark in order to receive a pardon for their actions at the jamming facility, having previously been told by the Invisible Watchers that their orders came from there. After the Aurora crossed the Volga, Miller contacted the Ark directly, and was instructed by the Doctor, pretending to be a high ranking minister, to report to the bunker.
Upon reaching the area, Miller sent Krest, Idiot, and Sam ahead of the Aurora to check radiation around the bunker entrance due to craters surrounding the bunker from nuclear weapons. When they returned, Krest stayed with the Aurora whilst Artyom, Anna, and Miller went with Idiot and Sam to the bunker entrance. Sam and Idiot stayed on the surface, while the others entered the Ark.
After entering the bunker, the rangers were assaulted by Cannibals and captured. The Doctor began threatening Miller and Artyom to have the rest of the Aurora crew enter the bunker, before taking Anna for a medical examination as he did not like the sound of her cough. Sam and Idiot then engaged the Cannibals, freeing Artyom and Miller. Miller, Sam, and Idiot went to find the Cannibals leaders and see what intelligence the bunker contained, while Artyom went alone to find Anna and rescue her from the Doctor.
After rescuing Anna, they met up with the others in the bunker control room, where Miller had just finished executing the other Cannibal leaders while Idiot checked the bunker computer, finding that Caspian-1 had been active for several years after the war. Leaving the bunker, the remaining Cannibals attempted to kill them, but were gunned down in large numbers by the fleeing rangers.
- Mount Yamantau and rumours about the possibility of an underground government facility located there actually first appeared in Beyond the Horizon, a novel from the Universe of Metro 2033 book series and part of Dyakov's trilogy. This may have been an inspiration for the location in Metro Exodus.
- The bunker's layout is very similar to D6, complete with the spiral elevator in the center. The railroad leads straight to the bunker from Moscow, presumably as part of Metro 2.
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